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Steve Fischmann holds slight lead in NM District 5 PRC race
Editor's Note: As of Wednesday morning, the Doña Ana County Clerk's Office had yet to report the results of more than 8,000 absentee ballots, which are still being tallied Wednesday. These results will factor into the District 5 PRC race.
LAS CRUCES - The race for the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission District 5, which covers Doña Ana County, proved to be a close one on Tuesday.
Democrat Steve Fischmann of Las Cruces, a former state senator, is vying with Republican Ben Hall of Alamogordo, a former PRC commissioner, for the seat, which covers the southwest quadrant of the state.
Fischmann is monitoring election results at the Las Cruces Convention Center, where a Democratic election night watch party was taking place.
About 9:15 p.m., the margin was nearly 4 percentage points in Fischmann's favor. By 10 p.m., that had widened to nearly 5 percentage points with 101 of 275 precincts fully reporting, according to the Secretary of State's Office. A substantial portion of results from Doña Ana County had yet to be reported. And, given that's Fischmann's home base, he was hopeful.
"I'm just hoping a lot more Doña Ana (County) votes are going to come in," he said. "I think I'll do pretty well in Doña Ana County."
Hall was awaiting election night results at home. He'd heard about long lines in Doña Ana County prompting delays in closing down the polls. The delayed results are tough to see as a candidate, but the interest in voting is positive, he said.
"I appreciate the fact everybody is trying to get out there and vote," he said. "It's good for people to get out there and vote."
Hall beat out two opponents in the Republican primary election to reach the November ballot.
New Mexico's Public Regulation Commission is a five-member elected body that regulates utilities, telecommunications, commercial transportation, pipelines, and the State Fire Marshal’s office.